Create a new clock object.


#include <zircon/syscalls.h>

zx_status_t zx_clock_create(uint64_t options,
                            const void* args,
                            zx_handle_t* out);




Creates a new zircon clock object. See clocks for an overview of clock objects.


The following options are defined for clock objects:

  • ZX_CLOCK_OPT_MONOTONIC : When set, creates a clock object that is guaranteed to never run backwards. Monotonic clocks must always move forward.
  • ZX_CLOCK_OPT_CONTINUOUS : When set, creates a clock that is guaranteed to never jump either forwards or backwards. Continuous clocks may only be maintained using frequency adjustments and are, by definition, also monotonic. Attempting to create a clock object with the ZX_CLOCK_OPT_CONTINUOUS option specified, but without the ZX_CLOCK_OPT_MONOTONIC option specified is an error, which will be signalled with ZX_ERR_INVALID_ARGS.
  • ZX_CLOCK_OPT_AUTO_START : When set, creates a clock that is started automatically for the user. You don't need to call zx_clock_update() to start the clock running. Initially, the clock will be a clone of clock monotonic, meaning that the internal transformation from clock monotonic to the newly created synthetic clock is the identity function. The created clock does not have to be created with either the ZX_CLOCK_OPT_MONOTONIC or ZX_CLOCK_OPT_CONTINUOUS flags set, however. Once created, users may still update the clock within the limits defined by the monotonic and continuous properties specified at create time, the handle rights, and the backstop time of the clock.


One additional creation-time argument may be specified when configuring the clock, the backstop time. See clocks for more details about backstop times.

In order to configure a backstop time, a user must pass a zx_clock_create_args_v1_t structure to the zx_clock_create call via the args parameter. Additionally, the options bits must have ZX_CLOCK_ARGS_VERSION(1) set in them.

For example, a user who wished to create a monotonic clock with a backstop time of 5500 might do something like the following.

#include <zircon/syscalls.h>
#include <zircon/syscalls/clock.h>

zx_handle_t MakeAClock() {
  zx_clock_create_args_v1_t args;
  zx_handle_t the_clock;
  zx_status_t status;

  args.backstop_time = 5500;
  status = zx_clock_create(ZX_CLOCK_ARGS_VERSION(1) | ZX_CLOCK_OPT_MONOTONIC, &args, &the_clock);
  if (status != ZX_OK) {
    // Log the error

  return the_clock;

Users do not have to supply an arguments structure. If an explicit backstop is not required, users may omit the version bits from the options parameter and simply pass nullptr for args.

Return value

On success, returns ZX_OK along with a new clock object via the out handle. Handles to newly created clock objects will have the ZX_RIGHT_READ, ZX_RIGHT_WRITE and ZX_RIGHT_SIGNAL rights assigned to them.


  • ZX_ERR_INVALID_ARGS : An invalid option flag was specified, a bad args structure version or pointer was passed, ZX_CLOCK_OPT_CONTINUOUS was specified without also specifying ZX_CLOCK_OPT_MONOTONIC, or the initial backstop time of an automatically started clock is after the current clock monotonic time.
  • ZX_ERR_NO_MEMORY Failure due to lack of memory.

See also